Binance parts ways with MENA director Omar Rahim

abdelaziz Fathi

Omar Rahim, MENA director of Binance, is parting ways with the influential crypto exchange, ending a less than two-year tenure. Without revealing further details, he is leaving to pursue new professional challenges.

Omar Rahim, MENA director of Binance

Omar Rahim had joined Binance in June 2020 as the exchange was expanding to the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) to fill a gap in the region’s digital assets market by facilitating access to its services and infrastructure.

Binance’s long-standing rival Huobi has its eye on the same region. It has planted its flag in the Middle East since December 2019 and now offers its exchange’s trading platform and liquidity as a white-label service.

Binance said the MENA venture focuses on creating partnerships with local, compliant players in the region’s digital asset and Blockchain sectors.

For this purpose, Binance named Omar Rahim as Director of MENA to lead its corporate strategy and future business. He was tasked with ensuring compliance with different regulatory frameworks in countries throughout the region.

“When I formally joined the Binance team, there wasn’t even a team called MENA. Through the work of my amazing colleagues, we built a real powerhouse in the region over the last 18 months. It’s been a lot of hard work, but more than that it’s been a whole lot of fun! It’s time to write a new chapter now, and I’m looking forward to working a little bit closer with some of the incredible projects in the crypto space. Big thank you to CZ and the amazing teams at Binance who continue to work relentlessly every day,” Omar said.

Omar has a 16-year experience in trading oil and equity derivatives products across US and UK markets. Before joining Binance, he co-founded a startup called EnergiMine which was developing energy management solutions based on AI and blockchain technology. His career encompasses various trading roles in the UK and Germany, including at Refco Trading Services Limited, SSE Airtricity and Vattenfall.

Arabs caught up with the hype

While cryptocurrency mass adoption in the Middle East may still take a little more time to take place, there are several countries in the region that are truly taking notice. Before 2018, it was the only region without a licensed cryptocurrency exchange, and local interest in this domain was scant.

Various countries in the Arab world have emerged as early adopters, and they’re poised to become even more influential in the near future.

Currently, at the frontier of Fintech adoption, Saudi Arabia and the UAE have announced plans to launch a digital currency to serve both countries.

In the UAE, the FSRA has overhauled current regulations to move the applicable rules on crypto firms from a bespoke category called “Operating a Crypto Asset Business,” to the respective underlying regulated activities. This would allow the regulator to classify crypto operations depending on their underlying nature rather than grouping the whole industry under a single headline.

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